Ohio State president’s compensation package wrapped in bow (tie)
When former Ohio State football coach Jim Tressel was under attack in 2010 for potential NCAA violations he was vehemently defended, at least at first, by his school president.
“I’m just hopeful the coach doesn’t dismiss me,” Ohio State President E. Gordon Gee quipped at a press conference.
Maybe now we know why. Without Ohio State, how would Gee pay for his bow ties?
While Tressel’s ultimate firing led to major sanctions, including a bowl ban this season, Gee is getting along just fine.
Since returning to the school in 2007, Gee has enjoyed a lavish lifestyle and logged more than $7.7 million in expenses.
The Dayton Daily News took a detailed look into Gee’s finances and came up with a few gems.
“Since 2007,” the paper reported, “Ohio State has spent more than $64,000 on bow ties, bow tie cookies and O-H and bow tie pins for Gee and others to distribute.”
Money well-spent? You bet, the school says. Gee hands out cookies all over campus.
“The students love it,” spokesman Jim Lynch said.
Gee has earned $8.6 million in salary and compensation and lives in a 9,600-square foot house, but he is not using taxpayer dollars to stay at places like the Taj Mahal Hotel in Mumbai.
Gee’s spending is supplemented by endowments from the general fund, but the excesses illustrate to many the NCAA’s double-standard when it comes to amateur athletics.
Ohio State was put on probation in part because a few football players received free tattoos at a Columbus parlor, yet Gee has a Platinum American Express card to spend like Lindsay Lohan?
They call the tradition of dotting the “i” at football games “script Ohio.”
Gee’s favorite script, some would say, is a blank check.
Go beyond the scoreboard
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